Gijs de Vries

This is a Dutch name; the family name is de Vries, not Vries.

Gijs M. de Vries (born 22 February 1956 in New York City) is a Dutch Democrats 66 (D66) politician. He was deputy Interior Minister between 1998 and 2002, and was the European Union's anti-terrorism co-ordinator from 25 March 2004 to March 2007. As of September 2008, he was the chairman of the European Security Research and Innovation Forum (ESRIF).[1]

From 1984 to 1998, Gijs de Vries was a member of the European Parliament for three consecutive terms. From 1994 to 1998, he was chairman of the group of the European Liberal Democrat and Reform Party.[2] He quit the European Parliament to become state secretary of the interior in the Dutch government Kok II.

As the EU anti-terrorism coordinator, he worked for Javier Solana in the Police and Judicial Co-operation in Criminal Matters (PJCCM) pillar. Solana outlined his duties as being to streamline, organise and co-ordinate the EU and its members fight against terrorism.

He stood down from the post in March 2007, citing personal reasons, but it is commonly understood that the position's mandate didn't have the necessary operational powers, as well as an overall reluctance within member states to supply information regarding anti-terror activities, even though the member states fully supported the establishment of the anti-terrorism coordinator after the 2004 Madrid train bombings.[3] In September 2007, MEPs called for the post to be filled, having been vacant for six months, and for it to be given real powers to carry out the post's tasks.[4] On 20 September 2007, the Belgian Gilles de Kerchove was appointed to succeed De Vries in the post.[5]

Prior to 2010 he had been a member of the People's Party for Freedom and Democracy (VVD). However, due to dissatisfaction at the VVD's decision to form a minority government with the support of the Party for Freedom led by Geert Wilders he left the party and joined the social liberal Democrats 66.[6]


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